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A New Islamic populism and the contradictions of development

Hadiz, V.R. (2014) A New Islamic populism and the contradictions of development. Journal of Contemporary Asia, 44 (1). pp. 125-143.

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A new form of Islamic populism has evolved in many parts of the Muslim world. Its emergence is part of the more universal phenomenon of populist responses to the contradictions of globalised capitalism. It is also a consequence of the outcomes of Cold War-era social conflicts and of social-structural transformations in Muslim societies over the last half-century. Specifically, it articulates the rising ambitions and growing frustrations of urban middle classes across the Muslim world, the anxieties of growing urban poor populations and relatively peripheralised sections of the bourgeoisie. Thus representing cross-class coalitions, the New Islamic Populism aims to provide access to power and tangible resources to an ummah conceived to be both downtrodden and homogeneous, though in actuality, increasingly differentiated. This is demonstrated through a discussion of Indonesia, Egypt and Turkey. The article is intended to provide an alternative to analyses that have tended to dominate discussions of Islamic politics over the last decade. These include analyses that emphasise radical ideas transmitted by shadowy transnational networks that threaten the global secular order and those that posit a strong relationship between political moderation and democratic practice but tend to overlook the structural underpinnings of Islamic politics.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: Asia Research Centre
Publisher: Routledge
Copyright: Journal of Contemporary Asia
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